Sunday, March 04, 2012

How to Save Money During the Spring Season

Spring is a time for renewal, getting a fresh start and making changes. Spring is also a great time to catch bargains and save money. Retail stores begin to mark up their prices, gas prices start to increase and consumers start to venture outdoors more.

Food prices have also increased. Prices on corn, wheat, soybeans and sugar have increased 40% or more in the past few months. According to CNN food prices are 2.9% higher than they were a year ago. You can still go shopping but look for ways to save money while making your purchases. Here are 15 tips on how to save money during the spring season.

1. Shopping. If you must go shopping during the spring season wait until retail stores offer sales on off-season items. You can save up to 50% off the regular price. The best items to buy in the spring are linen and handbags.
2. Outdoor. If you like doing activities outdoors shop for off-season items for fall or winter sports such as skis, ski suits, hats, gloves, boots or other items.
3. Free Events. Participate in free activities in your local community by viewing local newspapers and magazines for events that occur during the spring season.
4. Food. Buy in-season items or visit local farmers to get deals on foods. Buy in-season fruits and vegetables such as: mango, pineapple, strawberries, carrots, asparagus, collard greens, mustard greens, spinach, and artichokes.
5. Online. View website such as Groupon or Living Social for discounts and specials. Also visit social media websites for spring season deals.
6. Local. Visit local vendors to get deals on items and help support local businesses in your area.
7. Consignment. Visit consignment shops for clothes brought in by those who have done spring cleaning in their closets.
8. Specials. Setup alerts, subscribe to newsletters or visit websites to purchase gift certificates or gift cards which can be used in the future.
9. Groceries. Use the oven less and prepare meals ahead of time. Pull out the George Forman grill or your gas grill and prepare meat and vegetables on the grill to save on electricity.
10. Utilities. Open the blinds during the day to let heat in if it is cool at night where you live to save on heating costs. If you live in a warm climate open the windows before you go to bed or in the morning to cool off your home. Keep the blinds closed during the day to keep the heat out.
11. Insulate. Make sure you home is properly insulated to prevent heat from escaping through windows and doors and to save money on utility costs. Seal any cracks that appear in your home.
12. Thermostat. Set your thermoset at 78°F when at home and increase the temperature while you are away from home to save money on cooling costs.
13. Use Fans. Use ceiling fans to help circulate air.
14. Maintenance. Schedule regular maintenance for your heating and cooling units.
15. Water Heat. As spring approaches turn down the temperature of your hot water heater and set it to 120°F to lower your heating costs.

1 comment:

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